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Sony Bravia KDL-32EX703

Sony Bravia KDL-EX703 32in Freeview HD TV

Small screen star?

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Review Telly makers may be keenly touting 3D, but what rather more folk have been looking forward to this year is the debut of free-to-air HD programming that doesn't require you to have a satellite dish bolted to the side of your house.

Sony Bravia KDL-32EX703

Sony's Bravia KDL-32EX703: look says 'TV', not 'design statement'

Freeview HD's roll-out continues apace from its December 2009 debut, but it has taken until now for manufacturers to get TVs with integrated DVB-T2 tuners and MPEG 4 decoders out to the UK's electronics retailers. Sony's 26-60in Bravia Essential line, of which the KDL-32EX703 is one of the top-of-the-line models, are among the first.

Branding a TV as part of an 'Essential' series might suggest that it's a basic model, and while the EX703 might not sport some top-end features, it's certainly no pared-back offering. This model has a 1920 x 1080 full HD resolution, LED backlighting, 100Hz picture interpolation, internet connectivity, said Freeview HD tuner - it'll pick up standard-definition Freeview too - and a host of ports all wrapped up in a package that says, simply, 'I am a telly', not 'I am a conversation piece' or 'I am a design statement'.

At a given size, the Bravia Essential TVs run through from standard 50 interlaced fields a second with a fluorescent backlight, through 100 interlaced fields a second with the same backlight, which, in the top model, is replaced with an edge-mounted LED backlight.

Sony Bravia KDL-32EX703

No shortage of ports on the back

Uniform edge backlighting isn't going to give the contrast range that area-specific array backlighting will, but it does a darn good job here. Blacks look appropriately black, whites look white and colours are bright and rich. While I can't say, hand on heart, that the extra £200 the LED version commands over models with a fluorescent backlight is a must-spend, there's no question the EX703 presents a very nice picture.

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